Three Germans were observed to be dead in the conning tower. My wife and I visited Dieter and his wife in Germany in 2012. The depth charge tossed from the 327-foot cutter blew the submarine to the surface, where it was engaged by Coast Guardsmen. Lt. James Crotty as lieutenant junior grade aboard a Coast Guard cutter. When the United States entered World War II the Coast Guard temporarily became part of the United States Navy. All. She then was transferred to the United States Coast Guard and was in commission as the Coast Guard cutter USCGC Barataria (WAVP-381), later WHEC-381 from 1949 to 1969, serving in the Cuban Missile Crisis and the Vietnam War during her lengthy Coast Guard career. Spencer saw service in the Pacific War. We just got set down sideways to leeward. On Sep. 12, 1941, nearly three months before the Pearl Harbor attack, the crew of Coast Guard cutter Northland conducted the first U.S. raid of the war. ... On Jan. 31, the Secretary-class cutter Spencer, converted into an amphibious-force flagship, helped to direct landings south of the entrance to Manila Bay. All US Navy AGCs, LCCs, and Coast Guard WAGCs; Fred's Place -- The Place to Meet Old Shipmates; Jack's Joint-- an Unofficial Guast Guard Library and More... U.S. Coast Guard Cutters & Craft of World War II, Robert L. Scheina. Your email address will not be published. ww2dbase USS Spencer Awards Boats (Less than 65 ft) Cutters (65 ft or greater) Other Vessels (Non-CG) USCGC Tampa Notable People. At 1138 a submarine [U-175] surfaced to conning tower depth at 2,500 yards, drawing slowly right, still underway but apparently damaged. Apparently he was the only witness to this event it seems and when he reported it to the captain he was not believed, a dismissal that kind of hurt the very young seaman that he was at the time. Last week, the flag was returned to its home ship in Portsmouth. Here she provided navigational assistance for the fledgling Trans-Atlantic air industry and acted as a search and rescue platform both ships and aeroplanes. My uncle had shown me many years ago the same photo in an old family photo album with an arrow pointing him out. Required fields are marked *. The last of the Secretary class cutters is moored in Baltimore. (Later the CG came under Navy orders but not then.). The U.S Coast Guard Cutter (USCGC) WHEC-37 is one of the famed Secretary of the Treasury Class Coast Guard cutters built in the mid-1930's. 17th April 1943: USCGC Spencer’s mid Atlantic attack on U-175. The Spencer had another sub kill taken away, and may have had a third but were unable to confirm the kill. During the Battle of Atlantic she acted as a convoy escort, hunting German U-boats, and was responsible for sinking U-175 in 1943. After the war Spencer returned to her Coast Guard duties, serving in the Atlantic Ocean. Coast Guard units served with distinction in missions supporting the war effort even before formal U.S. entry into World War II. My father served on Duane and is pictured helping U-175 survivor Dieter Wolf across the deck in one photo not shown in this link. On the 16th Spencer dropped depth charge and delivered a mousetrap attack on a sound contact, firing eight more rounds of mousetrap ammunition on another contact an hour later. At 1145 Spencer ceased firing and maneuvered in the vicinity of the disabled submarine. Spencer returned to the United States in November 1969 and continued her peace-time mission of ocean station keeping. 1 boat had been damaged by a projectile and the superstructure had been damaged by shrapnel–all of the damage was caused by friendly fire as the gunners on board many of the nearby merchant ships failed to clear Spencer while firing at the surfaced U-boat. One straggler was reported. She was then sold to the North American Smelting Company and scrapped. I still have great memories of good times in the Spencer. Like all other Coast Guard vessels that sailed as part of the Navy during World War II, the cutter Spencer served right alongside Naval Ships-of-the-Line and matched them blow for blow through some of the most demanding actions. Inactive; 1,429 posts; She was decommissioned on 23 January 1974. Very good read. His inflatable life vest was not working well as it had been punctured by shrapnel, and he almost didn’t make it. Learn how your comment data is processed. Most served the United States for over 40 years, including with distinc… While still under Navy control, the cutter departed New York on 26 June 1919, bound for the west coast. After fitting out at Charleston, the cutter sailed north to the Fifth Coast Guard district, with Norfolk, Va., as her assigned home port. There she was credited with taking part in numerous amphibious assaults including Luzon and Palawan in the Philippines Campaign. On the 17th SS Fort Rampart was reported torpedoed and Spencer screened the Canadian escort during rescue operations. WHEC-37 was designed for law enforcement missions, search and rescue, and maritime patrol. At 1050 she had a sound contact and dropped 11 charges and on reestablishing it dropped 11 more. Following a Coast Guard tradition, a new 270-foot medium-endurance cutter commissioned in 1986 was named the Spencer. The Spencer served for over 37 years and when decommissioned in 1974 she was the most decorated cutter in the Coast Guard's fleet. On the 13th one escort was 25 miles to the north with four stragglers. Spencer earned eight battle stars in World War II (four in the Atlantic and four in the Pacific) as well as two battle stars in Vietnam. At 1238 Spencer began picking up survivors alongside. When I was on the Half Moon ( WHEC 378 ) we tied up across from the Spencer. My dad, fluent in German, was told to get the prisoner’s names and ranks. When the United States entered World War II the Coast Guard temporarily became part of the United States Navy. Caption: Sinking of German submarine U-175, April 1943. I’ve tried finding a list of crew names who served on the Spencer during the time in question but no luck. A historical document that may be getting donated to the museum in New Orleans. A World War II-era ship docked in Baltimore is about to get a new name.Living Classrooms Foundation and Historic Ships of Baltimore will rename the cutter Roger B. Taney. In the years immediately preceding U.S. entry into the conflict and over the subsequent four years, eight months of fighting, the Coast Guard's responsibilities grew exponentially. He told me that the Navy boys were jealous of the Coast Guard ship because the Navy ships had been ordered to remain on the periphery of the convoys proceeding north up the coast while the Coast Guard was free to engage anywhere they saw the enemy subs. A truly awesome expierence. At 1117 she regained it and fired mousetraps. At 0646 she established a contact and dropped a pattern of 10 charges and half an hour later fired mousetraps on another contact. Your email address will not be published. The crew of the submarine was observed to be abandoning ship via the conning tower. Naval Institute Press (1982) ISBN 0-87021-717-8 U.S. Coast Guard in World War II, Malcolm F. Willoughby. They were never meant for the North Atlantic, but we used them on ocean stations for years. We also spent July 4th weekend in 1966 escorting the tugs towing the SS Alva Cape out past the 1000 fathom curve off New Jersey and sinking her with gunfire. Save my name, email, and website in this browser for the next time I comment. The crew on the Spencer would be eating lobster for three or four days straight. 501stGeronimo. Commissioned in 1937, she was first used as a search and rescue unit off Alaska's fishing grounds. Recommended Posts. She finished the war in the Pacific. That was typical of his amazing generation. Onboard her for this voyage were 24 of her World War II crew. These made them ride even worse. I am told my Grandfather is one of the three sailors wearing an officers combination cover standing on the fantail of the Spencer of the historical photo with the deapthcharge bloom in the background. By 501stGeronimo, June 28, 2013 in BOB GILL MEMORIAL GROUPINGS PAGE. USCGC Spencer (WMEC-905) is a United States Coast Guard medium endurance cutter.Her keel was laid on 26 June 1982 at Robert Derecktor Shipyard Incorporated, Middletown, Rhode Island.She was named for John Canfield Spencer, United States Secretary of the Treasury from 1843 to 1844 under President John Tyler and launched on 17 April 1984 and was commissioned into service on 28 June 1986. Spencer served for over 37 years and when decommissioned in 1974, she was the most decorated cutter in the Coast Guard's fleet. Although I never knew him, I have been told by my father and his siblings that my Grandfather Aubrey Rogers was the gunnery officer aboard the CGC Spencer during the sinking of this U-boat. All Lighthouses & Light Stations Stations & Units Water. He was the last of the U-175 survivors. He also saw the Spencer undergoing engine replacement due to its hard charging actions in defense of the convoys a complex process involving the detachment of the aft deck in order to remove and replace burned out engines. The Medium Endurance Cutter or WMEC is a type of United States Coast Guard Cutter mainly consisting of the 270-foot (82 m) Famous- and 210-foot (64 m) Reliance-class cutters.These larger cutters are under control of Area Commands (Atlantic Area or Pacific Area). The after davit of Spencer’s No. The submarine boarding party returned at 1255, having boarded the submarine momentarily prior to it sinking. I got to board the ship once in New Jersey, and as a 10 year old it was very exciting. As air-passenger aircraft flights were expanding at home and overseas, the Coast Guard believed that cutter-based aircraft were essential for future search and rescue missions. Dieter is shown in the picture above as the man still in the water grabbing the cargo net. https://military.wikia.org/wiki/List_of_United_States_Coast_Guard_cutters 2 boat with a submarine boarding party. There was so much windage aft that we could not gybe, or bring the stern across the wind. Spencer made the announcement Thursday alongside Adm. Karl Schultz, the commandant of the U.S. Coast Guard, in a ceremony aboard the U.S. Coast Guard Cutter Eagle in Cherbourg, France. The Treasury-class cutters proved highly adaptable, dependable, versatile and long-lived warships. Does anyone know what issue of Life Magazine this appeared in? From the United States Coast Guard – History of the Cutter USCGC Spencer. At 1140 Spencer commenced firing all guns and observed many hits on the conning tower and at its base. Spencer saw service in the Pacific War. After I left the Spencer they painted her gray and sent her off to Vietnam. It remains in active service to this day. After the war, the Coast Guard added a huge tripod radar mast aft, and a two story balloon shelter. 31 talking about this. For ten months she carried out surveillance to prevent troops and supplies from getting into South Vietnam. We were relieved at the end of our Vietnam deployment by the Duane. The US Revenue Cutter Spencer, 1844-1867 On 5 September, President Franklin D. Roosevelt proclaimed U.S. neutrality and ordered units of the U.S. Navy and Coast Guard to establish a “Neutrality Patrol.” Its duties included ob… The Allied operation, launched on June 6, 1944, started the successful invasion of German-occupied Western Europe during World War II. Commissioned in 1937, she was first used as a search and rescue unit off Alaska's fishing grounds. The Coast Guard war diaries include Abstracts of War Diaries, 5/1942 - 9/1945, which are arranged by year and thereunder by unit, and include highlights of outstanding activities and operations by Coast Guard ships and shore units during World War II. He would tell us about how Canadian lobstermen would deliberately leave port with only enough fuel for half way on their trip, and would then radio the Coast Guard to have the Spencer tow them back to port to save on fuel expenses. I think it was to Argentia, Newfoundland. Pearl Harbor D-Day Vietnam Photos Oral Histories & Memoirs Browse by Topic. I wonder when the captions were written: they mostly speak of Nazis instead of German seaman. In the uncertain days of World War II, the Coast Guard-manned USS Spencer steamed alongside convoy ships maintaining long lines of food, men and war machines destined for the front lines of Europe. We had to turn the other way, heading up into the wind and then falling off the other side to make our turn. In an instant it had disappeared. He had volunteered to make his way in the heavy seas to the aft depth charge racks to tighten them down their having come loose in the rough ocean at some considerable risk to his person. All. The Spencer served over 37 years, and when decommissioned in 1974, was the most decorated cutter in the Coast Guard’s fleet. I also served briefly in the Half Moon, having been loaned to her TDY for her Gitmo trip in January 1966 because she was very short of officers after some transfers and an illness and an accident. The Treasury-class cutter was a group of seven high endurance cutters launched by the United States Coast Guard between 1936 and 1937. This month marks the 70th anniversary of a decisive victory for the predecessor of Coast Guard Cutter Spencer. We went immediately to refresher training at Gitmo, and did several Ocean Stations in my time. World War II. Air. At 1138 a submarine [U-175] surfaced to conning tower depth at 2,500 yards, drawing slowly right, still underway but apparently damaged. The USCGC Northland in World War II. Hope this story adds to the lore of the USCGC Spencer. Assets. One time he told me when leaving the pier from Bayonne, the ship was not properly untied and pulled the dock down as it left, causing a band playing on the pier to end up in the river. They just did what they thought was their duty. At 1140 Spencer commenced firing all guns and observed many hits on the conning tower and at its base. Following in my Grandfather’s footsteps, I too joined the U.S. Coast Guard and retired several years ago after a seccessful career. WW2 Coast Guard USS Spencer Cutter, Captured U-175 group WW2 Coast Guard USS Spencer Cutter, Captured U-175 group. The sinking of U-175. She was a naphtha tanker which had been in a collision in Kill Van Kull, and then blew up again in Gravesend Bay when they were trying to unload the remaining naphtha. Spencer was assigned to the US Navy's Seventh Fleet, in the Pacific in late 1944, where she served as a Communications Command Ship. The Allies drove toward Manila and captured the capital city Feb. 6, but several strongpoints still remained in Japanese hands. The 230 foot Coast Guard Cutter Storis, designed to serve as a supply ship for Bluie bases, was commissioned on 30 September 1942. As a torpedoed merchant ship goes down in February 1943, the U.S. Coast Guard cutter Spencer searches for the attacking U-boat. These ships were also collectively known as the "327's" as they were all 327 feet (100 m) in length. Her last voyage was from New York City to the United States Coast Guard Yard, Curtis Bay on 15 January 1974. She was one of the seaplane tenders the Coast Guard took over after the war. All Subsequent contacts were non-sub or lost and Spencer rejoined the convoy. On 3 September 1939, two days after the German invasion of Poland, France and Great Britain declared war on Germany. They were built to run from Atoll lagoon to atoll lagoon in the South Pacific, preferably on a nice day. 501stGeronimo. Alex Obrizok, a World War II veteran, held on to a Coast Guard ensign, a flag from his ship the Tampa, for 70 years. The Duane, in the immediate vicinity, assisted, firing all batteries, while merchant vessels in rear columns of the convoy opened fire on the submarine, some projectiles passing it and landing close to and on Spencer. The class were called the "Treasury class" because they were each named for former Secretaries of the Treasury. Another reason the Navy were jealous of her is that she was a tremendous seaboat, and a much more comfortable ride than anything near her size the navy owned. At 1215 Spencer lowered her No. She served as an engineering training ship with students using her steam propulsion plant until 15 December 1980. On the 15th the submarine report indicated that the convoy may have been sighted by U-boats. During the Battle of Atlantic she acted as a convoy escort, hunting German U-boats, and was responsible for sinking U-175in 1943. They were single screw and had icebreaker bows. The Coast Guard During World War II. These cutters have adequate accommodations for crew to live on board and can do 6 to 8 week patrols. My father served on the Spencer. Original caption, “NAZI SUBMARINE SUNK BY THE FAMED CUTTER USCGC SPENCER (WPG-36): Effect of the U.S. Coast Guard Cutter USCGC SPENCER (WPG-36)'S fire are visible in this close-up shot of the U-Boat, taken as the battle raged. Posted June 28, 2013. This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. On board her for this voyage were 24 of her World War II crew. She’s the Taney and is wonderfully preserved. USCGC Spencer (WPG-36) was a Treasury-class cutter of the United States Coast Guard that served during World War II.. They joined next day as did another Canadian escort. My Dad’s ship, PY20, the USS Tourmaline, saw the Spencer in action while conducting convoy assembly escort duty along the east coast of the US during the height of the submarine attacks in 1942 & 1943 before being transferred to the Pacific Theater. My dad didn’t speak much about his time on the Spencer and the only combat experience he ever mention was a kamikaze attack. I was about 10 years old at the time and remember picking him up at 1 AM in Bayonne New Jersey. Medical Logs of Revenue Cutters and Coast Guard Vessels, 1899 - 1934; Telegraph and Radio Logs of Revenue Cutters and Coast Guard Vessels, 1910 - 1916; Logbooks of Lighthouse Tenders, 1873 - 1941; For U.S. Coast Guard logs from 1972 to the 1980s see our Regional Archives depending on the vessel's home port and location of station. The submarine was sunk off south-west of Ireland by USCGC Spencer (WPG-36) on April 17, 1943. . The U. S. Coast Guard in World War II . I reported to the Spencer straight out of OCS in January 1965 and served in her until October 1966. (U.S. Coast Guard) The Coast Guard conducted the first U.S. raid of WWII. Her last voyage was from New York City to the United States Coast Guard Yard, Curtis Bay on 15 January 1974. As with all wars, World War II had a transformative effect on America's military services. Location: 35°54'7.61"N, 75°23'42.47"W (35.902116, -75.395133) Depth:77 feet Vessel Type:U.S. Coast Guard Active Class Patrol Boat Length: 125 feet Breadth:23 feet 6 inches Gross Tonnage: 232 tons Cargo:N/A Built: American Brown Boveri Electric Company, Camden, New Jersey, and commissioned on March 14, 1927 Hull Number: Unknown Port of Registry: Morehead City, North Carolina, USA Owner:U.S. Coast Guard Former Names:None Date Lost:September 14, 1944 Sunk By: Great Atlantic Hurricane Surv… Fixed Wing Rotary Wing Significant Dates in Coast Guard Aviation Land. She returned to combat duty off the Vietnam coast in January 1969. The book gives a comprehensive listing of all the craft used by the Coast Guard and transfered to the Navy. *Coast Guard Cutter Spencer is scheduled to shift homeports to Portsmouth, VA in 2021* Commanding Officer, CDR Thomas C. Rodzewicz Executive Officer, LCDR Nolan J. Cuevas Very little in the way of boasting. On 28 August, after her arrival in the 13th Naval District, she was returned to Treasury Department jurisdiction. My brother never wanted to go on a cruiseship after spending a full three years on air sea rescue in the Atlantic. Written at the top is “22 German prisoners”. He was a quartermaster. Crotty, a 1934 graduate of the U.S. Coast Guard Academy, served throughout the … I always thought it exciting for the CG ship to have actually sank a Nazi submarine. In mid 1943 three of the new 180 foot Buoy tenders arrived. She was decommissioned on 23 January 1974. While there he look up to see the bow of the Spencer looming over him on the crest of a wave. Twenty five of Spencer’s men were injured, one dying of his wounds [RM 3/c Julius Petrella].